JaMarcus Russell Is Gone: Is Darren McFadden Raider Nation’s Next Target?

Darren McFadden needs to get in gear to avoid a "Russell-like" fate!

The current offseason put together by the Oakland Raiders has inspired a ground swell of positivity and elation from the majority of Raider Nation. The great draft, the trade for Jason Campbell, and the cutting of dead, unproductive weight is very pleasing to most fans.

The move that seems to supercede all others is the release of former first overall pick, JaMarcus Russell. The No. 2 jersey-burning parties in the parking lot, the heaps of negative press, and the virtually singular voice of the fans demanding his release have finally paid off for an angry Raider Nation.

With Russell gone, who is the player toward whom Raider fans are likely to direct their anger next? Who is the player that is furthest from meeting the expectations of the fans?

The most likely candidate is former fourth overall pick, Darren McFadden.

McFadden has not performed anywhere near the potential he showed in college. The Doak Walker Award winner and two-time Heisman runner-up has yet to be what Al Davis drafted him to be. His numbers are pedestrian at best.

Some of his lack of production can be placed on the coaching staff and ownership. While the team drafted this running back with such great potential, the offensive line had not been addressed until this most recent offseason.

Combine that with the coaches not using McFadden in a way that maximizes his talent, and you're left with sub-par production from a talented back.

However, the blame can not be placed solely on the coaching staff. Some of it should fall on McFadden himself.

Coming out of college, McFadden was touted as the best running back available. I never believed this (I felt it was McFadden's teammate, Felix Jones), but that's what the "experts" were saying. Davis believed the hype and took McFadden fourth overall.

Based on his college numb...

About the Author